IS GREEN ALWAYS THE BEST COLOUR?
posted on Sunday, May 13, 2007 02:45 PM
The rise in popularity of locally sourced products has been a huge step in a very positive direction by UK consumers recently. This renaissance of local markets seems to be occurring as people consciously seek to minimise their carbon footprint, and demand greater quality from products they buy. No longer are consumers concerned solely with aesthetics and functionality but also moral values and production processes.
Important as it is to champion local, domestic products; it is also vital to maintain a balanced, global view of the world in which we live. There are times when environmental concerns need to be curtailed in order to accommodate the bigger picture.
Estimates suggest that the UK spends £57 million a week on cocaine, of which 10-15% goes back into financing illegal armies and terrorism. No matter how much we try to distance ourselves from the global market, international trade is always present. We must practice our consumer concern globally as well as locally if we are to combat the negative effects of a global economy. Whenever a bottle of Colombian liquid fruit is bought through the Aficionados Program run by Fruto del Espiritu the purchase finances 20 minutes of Micro-Enterprise Education or equivalent, opening up new opportunities for Colombians with very few options. This program is reactivating economies in rural areas of Colombia, creating a financial basis for displaced people to return to areas, which are now safe to go back to. There are an increasing number of companies offering similar profit sharing schemes to this. These are the types of companies and policies we need to be supporting when spending our money on imported goods.
Issues concerning the environmental impact of international travel are also addressed here - international trade, travel and consumerism are all powerful interlinked tools that if used properly, can help to address the same world issues. The currency used to bring about change is not restricted to finance. Through travel the direct exchange of culture, knowledge, skills and experience can also contribute towards positive development.
In our small well connected world should environmental concerns always be at the top of our agenda?